Chinese novel written by Jin Yong, the story of a young schemer, Wei Xiaobao who joins the Heaven and Earth Society, who are dedicated to overthrowing the Qing dynasty- there are also a lot of chinese-language movies made from this book and that is what I am more familiar with, particularly the Steven Chow version, which is totally exaggerated and includes lots of silly dialogue and made-up martial arts moves not included in the original book.

Wei Xiaobao's filthy mouth (he grew up in a brothel) tends to get him in trouble but he always manages to weasel out of things by using his quick wits- in many ways he is similar to Edmund Blackadder in the British TV series Blackadder

This is a beautifully written martial arts novel written by Jin Yong. The main character is a lazy pre-adolescent boy whose mother is a whore. Oh, and he knows no kung fu and doesn't learn much of it either, despite having many talented teachers willing to teach him. This is quite the antithesis of most other martial art novels because the main characters are usually the equivalent of paladins. They do good deeds, and they are very good at fighting.

The books is set in the Qing Dynasty (you know, the one after the Ming dynasty). It is a time where the Han people are all bent on turning back the Manchus that have usurped the throne and returning power to the Han. A good portion of the story takes place in the Forbidden City because the main character pretended to be a eunuch servant and the emperor took a liking to him.

Wei Xiaobao, the main character, with his slippery tongue and cleverness outwits the villains and manages to get 7 beautiful wives.

Many different versions of the book have been made into movies and TV mini-series. None of them can compare to the book however, with inadequate actors and cheesy flying fight scenes. (You know what I'm talking about...)

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